A STUNNINGLY ILLUSTRATED BOOK REVEALING THE GREATEST MYTHS, LIES AND BLUNDERS ON MAPS
'Highly recommended' - Andrew Marr
'A spectacular, enjoyable and eye-opening read' - Jonathan Ross
The Phantom Atlas is an atlas of the world not as it ever existed, but as it was thought to be. These marvellous and mysterious phantoms - non-existent islands, invented mountain ranges, mythical civilisations and other fictitious geography - were all at various times presented as facts on maps and atlase..
The New York Times bestseller that tells the story of Britain's greatest and worst dynasty--"a real-life Game of Thrones" (The Wall Street Journal)--by the author of The Templars
The first Plantagenet king inherited a blood-soaked kingdom from the Normans and transformed it into an empire stretched at its peak from Scotland to Jerusalem. In this epic history, Dan Jones vividly resurrects this fierce and seductive royal dynasty and its mythic world. We meet the captivating Eleanor of Aquitaine..
In 1933, Adolf Hitler became Chancellor of Germany. A year later, all parties but the Nazis had been outlawed, freedom of the press was but a memory, and Hitler's dominance seemed complete. Yet over the next few years, an unlikely clutch of conspirators emerged – soldiers, schoolteachers, politicians, diplomats, theologians, even a carpenter – who would try repeatedly to end the Fuhrer's genocidal reign.
Danny Orbach's meticulously researched book tells the story of their noble, ingenious, an..
The unexpected story of an essential 18th and 19th century accessory This fascinating and enlightening study of the tie-on pocket combines materiality and gender to provide new insight into the social history of women's everyday lives-from duchesses and country gentry to prostitutes and washerwomen-and to explore their consumption practices, sociability, mobility, privacy, and identity. A wealth of evidence reveals unexpected facets of the past, bringing women's stories into intimate focus. "Wha..
Adam Zamoyski first wrote his history of Poland two years before the collapse of the Soviet Union. This substantially revised and updated edition sets the Soviet era in the context of the rise, fall and remarkable rebirth of an indomitable nation.
In 1797, Russia, Prussia and Austria divided Poland among themselves, rewriting Polish history to show that they had brought much-needed civilisation to a primitive backwater. But the country they wiped off the map had been one of Europe’s largest a..
John Julius Norwich expertly examines the history of the oldest continuing institution in the world, tracing the papal line down the centuries from St Peter to the present
Of the 280-odd holders of the supreme office, some have unquestionably been saints; others have wallowed in unspeakable immorality. One was said to have been a woman, her sex being revealed only when she improvidently gave birth to a baby during a papal procession. Almost as shocking was Formosus whose murdered corpse was e..
‘A gripping and compelling account…. The peaceful ending of the Cold War between West and East remains one of the greatest achievements of modern statecraft’ CHRISTOPHER ANDREW, Literary Review
This landmark global study makes us rethink what happened when the Cold War ended and our present era was born.
The world changed dramatically as the Berlin Wall fell and protest turned to massacre in Tiananmen Square. Now, with deft analysis and a wealth of newly declassified archival sources, historia..
On the 500th anniversary of Luther’s rebellion, this spectacular global history traces the revolutionary faith that shaped the modern world.
Five hundred years ago Protestant Christianity began with one stubborn monk today, it includes a billion people across the globe.
The upheaval Martin Luther triggered inspired one of the most creative and destructive movements in human history. Protestants is the story of the men and women who made and remade this quarrelsome faith by demanding ..
A scintillating, encyclopaedic history, rich in detail from the arcane to the familiar... a veritable tour de force' (Richard Overy, New Statesman). 'Transnational history at its finest ...social, political and cultural themes swirl together in one great canvas of immense detail and beauty' (Gerard DeGroot, The Times). 'Dazzlingly erudite and entertaining' (Dominic Sandbrook, The Sunday Times). A masterpiece which brings to life an extraordinarly turbulent and dramatic era of revolutionary chang..
Full of passion and betrayal, murder and war, the first volume of an epic new series from bestselling historian Alison Weir, bringing five of England's medieval queens to life.
A Daily Telegraph Book of the Year
Love, murder, war, betrayal
This is the story of the five extraordinary queens who helped the Norman kings of England rule their dominions. Recognised as equal sharers in the royal authority, their story is packed with tragedy, high drama, even comedy.
Heroines, villains, sta..
1215 – the penultimate year of the reign of a king with the worst reputation of any in our history – saw England engulfed by crisis.
Weakened by the loss of Normandy, King John faced insurrection by his disgruntled barons. With the assistance of the Archbishop of Canterbury, they drew up a list of their demands. In June, in a quiet Thames-side water-meadow, John attached his regal seal – under oath – to a charter that set limits on regal power. In return, the barons renewed their vows of feal..
Winner of the Duff Cooper and Lionel Gelber prizes
In 1932-33, nearly four million Ukrainians died of starvation, having been deliberately deprived of food. It is one of the most devastating episodes in the history of the twentieth century. With unprecedented authority and detail, Red Famine investigates how this happened, who was responsible, and what the consequences were. It is the fullest account yet published of these terrible events.
The book draws on a mass of archival material and ..
'Superb' The Economist'Elegant, entertaining and frequently surprising' New York TimesThe fascinating story of the Regency period in Britain - an immensely colourful and chaotic decade that marked the emergence of the modern world.The Regency began on 5 February 1811 when the Prince of Wales replaced his violently insane father George III as the sovereign de facto. It ended on 29 January 1820, when George III died and the Prince Regent became King as George IV. At the centre of the era is of cou..
A Longman-History Today Book Prize Finalist Winner of the Thomas J. Wilson Memorial Prize A Times Literary Supplement Book of the Year "Deeply thoughtful...A delight." -The Economist "[A] tour de force...Bevilacqua's extraordinary book provides the first true glimpse into this story...He, like the tradition he describes, is a rarity." -New Republic In the seventeenth and eighteenth centuries, a pioneering community of Western scholars laid the groundwork for the modern understanding of Islamic c..
For more than 40 years after the Second World War the Iron Curtain divided Europe physically, with 300 km of walls and barbed wire fences; ideologically, between communism and capitalism; psychologically, between people imprisoned under totalitarian dictatorships and their neighbours enjoying democratic freedoms; and militarily, by two mighty, distrustful power blocs, still fighting the cold war. At the start of 1989, ten European nations were still Soviet vassal states. By the end of the year, ..
The definitive history of the Iran-Iraq war, and revolutionary Iran, essential for understanding the country today
For over 30 years the Islamic Republic has resisted widespread condemnation, sanctions, and sustained attacks by Iraq in an eight-year war. Many policy-makers today share a weary wish that Iran would somehow just disappear as a problem. But with Iran's continuing commitment to a nuclear programme and its reputation as a trouble-maker in Afghanistan, Lebanon and elsewhere, this is..
What caused the Russian Revolution? Did it succeed or fail? Do we still live with its consequences?
Orlando Figes teaches history at Birkbeck, University of London and is the author of many acclaimed books on Russian history, including A People's Tragedy, which The Times Literary Supplement named as one of the '100 most influential books since the war', Natasha's Dance, The Whisperers, Crimea and Just Send Me Word. The Financial Times called him 'the greatest storyteller of modern Russian his..
How do we find the life that's right for each of us?More and more of us are feeling overwhelmed by the everyday struggle to lead the lives to which we aspire. Children are placed under unbearable pressure to achieve; adults fight a constant battle to balance family life with work and economic demands; old people suffer from social isolation and a lack of emotional security. People of every age are feeling increasingly at odds with the world, and less able to live a life that corresponds to their..
Sunday Times History Book of the Year 2014
Winner of the 2014 Wolfson History Prize, the 2014 Guggenheim-Lehrman Prize in Military History, the Society for Military History's 2015 Distinguished Book Award and the 2015 British Army Military Book of the Year
For the empires of Germany and Austria-Hungary the Great War - which had begun with such high hopes for a fast, dramatic outcome - rapidly degenerated as invasions of both France and Serbia ended in catastrophe. For four years the f..
The Husayni family of Jerusalem dominated Palestinian history for 250 years, from the Ottoman times through to the end of the British Mandate. At the height of the family's political influence, positions in Jerusalem could only be obtained through its power base.In this compelling political biography, Ilan Pappe traces the rise of the Husaynis from a provincial Ottoman elite clan into the leadership of the Palestinian national movement in the twentieth century. In telling their story, Pappe..
Winner of the 2010 W.J.M. Mackenzie Prize for Best Political Science Book of the Year 2010.
The relentless rise of Communism was the most momentous political development of the first half of the twentieth century. No political change has been more fundamental than its demise in Europe and its decline elsewhere. In this hugely acclaimed book Archie Brown provides an indispensable history that examines the origins of the ideology, its development in different countries, its collapse in many sta..
Rise and Fall opens with the Akkadian Empire, which ruled over a vast expanse of the region of ancient Mesopotamia, then turns to the immense Roman Empire, where we trace back our western and eastern roots. Next Strathern describes how a great deal of western classical culture was developed in the Abbasid and Umayyid Caliphates. Then, while Europe was beginning to emerge from a period of cultural stagnation, it almost fell to a whirlwind invasion from the East, at which point we meet the Emperor..
In the late Iron Age, Rome was a small collection of huts arranged over a few hills. By the third century BC, it had become a large and powerful city, with monumental temples, public buildings and grand houses. It had conquered the whole of Italy and was poised to establish an empire. But how did it accomplish this historic transformation?
This book explores the development of Rome during this period, and the nature of its control over Italy, considering why and how the Romans achieved this s..
Following on from his epic ‘1812: Napoleon's Fatal March on Moscow’, bestselling author Adam Zamoyski has written the dramatic story of the Congress of Vienna.
In the wake of his disastrous Russian campaign of 1812, Napoleon's imperious grip on Europe began to weaken, raising the question of how the Continent was to be reconstructed after his defeat. There were many who dreamed of a peace to end all wars, in which the interests of peoples as well as those of rulers would be taken into account. ..
Roma is the story of the ancient city of Rome, from its mythic beginnings as a campsite along a trade route to its emergence as the centre of the most extensive, powerful empire in the ancient world. Beginning with the prehistory days when Roma was a way station among seven hills for traders and merchants and the founding of the city itself by Romulus and Remus, critically acclaimed historical novelist Steven Saylor tells the epic saga of a city and its people, its rise to prominence among the c..
No other political entity has shaped the modern world like the Roman Empire. Encompassing close to a quarter of the world’s population and 3 million km2 of land, it represented a diverse and dynamic collection of nations, states and tribes, all bound to Rome and the ideal of a Roman identity. In the lively and engaging style that he’s known for, Philip Matyszak traces the history of the Roman Empire from the fall of the Assyrians and the rise of the Roman Republic through to the ages of expans..
The Romanovs were the most successful dynasty of modern times, ruling a sixth of the world's surface. How did one family turn a war-ruined principality into the world's greatest empire? And how did they lose it all?
This is the intimate story of twenty tsars and tsarinas, some touched by genius, some by madness, but all inspired by holy autocracy and imperial ambition. Montefiore's gripping chronicle reveals their secret world of unlimited power and ruthless empire-building, overshadowed by p..
A compelling and persuasive account of how the Romantic Movement permanently changed the way we see things and express ourselves.
A compelling and persuasive account of how the Romantic Movement permanently changed the way we see things and express ourselves.
Three great revolutions rocked the world around 1800. The first two - the French Revolution and the Industrial Revolution - have inspired the greatest volume of literature. But the third - the romantic revolution - was perhaps the mos..
For almost a thousand years, Rome held sway as the spiritual and artistic centre of the world. Hughes vividly recreates the ancient Rome of Julius Caesar, Marcus Aurelius, Nero, Caligula, Cicero, Martial and Virgil. With the artistic blossoming of the Renaissance, he casts his unwavering critical eye over the great works of Raphael, Michelangelo and Brunelleschi, shedding new light on the Old Masters. In the seventeenth, eighteenth and nineteenth centuries, when Rome's cultural predominance was ..
Nominated for the 2017 Pen Hessell-Tiltman
Daily Telegraph's Best History Books of 2017
Sunday Times' Best History Books of 2017
A sweeping history of the city of Rome, seen through the eyes of its most significant sackings, from the Gauls to the Nazis and everything in between.
No city on earth has preserved its past as Rome has. Visitors can cross bridges that were crossed by Julius Caesar and explore temples visited by Roman emperors. These architectural survivals are all the more rem..
A silent midnight over the Danube, and this vast Bavarian pantheon towering over me like an arcane, mystical force. I walked through the snow, keeping outside the ring of floodlights which threw giant shadows from the goddesses. The circle of petrified Valkyries symbolised das großdeutsche Reich, that empire of the soul which has bewitched every Germanic despot from Barbarossa to Hitler.
So begins a journey into the German Reich, through the eighteen territories memorialised in the Hall of Libe..
Geoffrey Hosking is one of the foremost historians of Russia and its people. The result of a lifetime's knowledge, this monumental and authoritative work has been acclaimed as the definitive single-volume history of Russia, tracing its story from the settlement of Kiev through to the present day. This second edition is updated throughout, with a new chapter on the recent role of Putin and Medvedev, and their impact on Russia's economy, politics and its citizens...
'Brilliant, disturbing . . . an important story that needed to be told. A fast-moving and most compelling read.' - Helen Rappaport, author of Four Sisters and The Race to Save the Romanovs
The gripping human story of how American volunteers fought famine in Bolshevik Russia, saving Lenin’s revolutionary government from chaos and millions of people from starvation
In 1921, after six years of unrelenting war and revolution, Russia was in ruins. The economy had collapsed, the country was ravaged ..
1917: the year a series of rebellions toppled three centuries of autocratic rule and placed a group of political radicals in charge of a world power. Here, suddenly, was the first modern socialist state, "a kingdom more bright that any heaven had to offer”. But the dream was short-lived, bringing in its wake seventy years of conflict and instability that nearly ended in nuclear war.
How could such a revolution take place and what caused it to go so very wrong? Presenting a uniquely long view ..
At the turn of the century, the Russian economy was growing by about 10% annually and its population had reached 150 million. By 1920 the country was in desperate financial straits and more than 20 million Russians had died. And by 1950, a third of the globe had embraced communism.
The triumph of Communism sets a profound puzzle. How did the Bolsheviks win power and then cling to it amid the chaos they had created? Traditional histories remain a captive to Marxist ideas about class struggle. ..
THE SUNDAY TIMES BESTSELLER
Planet Earth is 4.5 billion years old. In just a fraction of that time, one species among countless others has conquered it. Us.
We are the most advanced and most destructive animals ever to have lived. What makes us brilliant? What makes us deadly? What makes us Sapiens?
In this bold and provocative book, Yuval Noah Harari explores who we are, how we got here and where we’re going.
Sapiens is a thrilling account of humankind’s extraordinary history – from..
Keith Lowe's Savage Continent is an awe-inspiring portrait of how Europe emerged from the ashes of WWII.
The end of the Second World War saw a terrible explosion of violence across Europe. Prisoners murdered jailers. Soldiers visited atrocities on civilians. Resistance fighters killed and pilloried collaborators. Ethnic cleansing, civil war, rape and murder were rife in the days, months and years after hostilities ended. Exploring a Europe consumed by vengeance, Savage Continen..
A landmark account that reveals the long history behind the current Catalan and Scottish independence movements A distinguished historian of Spain and Europe provides an enlightening account of the development of nationalist and separatist movements in contemporary Catalonia and Scotland. This first sustained comparative study uncovers the similarities and the contrasts between the Scottish and Catalan experiences across a five-hundred-year period, beginning with the royal marriages that brought..
One of the most eminent historians of our age investigates the extraordinary success of five small maritime states Andrew Lambert, author of The Challenge: Britain Against America in the Naval War of 1812-winner of the prestigious Anderson Medal-turns his attention to Athens, Carthage, Venice, the Dutch Republic, and Britain, examining how their identities as "seapowers" informed their actions and enabled them to achieve success disproportionate to their size. Lambert demonstrates how creating m..
In this magnificent requiem to a civilization in ruins, the winner of the 2015 Nobel Prize in Literature reinvents a singular, polyphonic literary form, bringing together the voices of dozens of witnesses to the collapse of the USSR in a formidable attempt to chart the disappearance of a culture and to surmise what new kind of man may emerge from the rubble.
Alexievich's method is simple: 'I don't ask people about socialism, I ask about love, jealousy, childhood, old age. Music, dances, hairs..
Repression, control, manipulation and elimination of enemies assisted in the establishment of the Soviet state, and helped maintain it in power, but could not, in the end, prevent its collapse.
Citizens of the West have, for the most part, been told a very simplified story of the repressive 'totalitarian' state that was the USSR. In fact, it was sustained by more than just policing and force. No amount of revisionist history can erase the reality of millions controlled, imprisoned and killed, b..
The Knights Templar are one of the most secretive and powerful religious orders in history: for over two centuries they were the elite fighting force of the Crusades. Highly trained, and adhering to a strict chivalric code, their success on the battlefield brought them both wealth and political influence. But it is the legends and secrecy surrounding the order and its Grand Masters that continue to fascinate historians and general readers alike.
Secrets of the Knights Templar examines ea..
Let us turn our faces towards Asia', exhorted Lenin when the long-awaited revolution in Europe failed to materialize. 'The East will help us conquer the West.'
Peter Hopkirk's book tells for the first time the story of the Bolshevik attempt to set the East ablaze with the heady new gospel of Marxism. Lenin's dream was to liberate the whole of Asia, but his starting point was British India. A shadowy undeclared war followed. Among the players in this new Great Game were British spies, Communis..
Eric Berkowitz evokes the entire sweep of Western sex law, from the savage impalement of an Ancient Mesopotamian adulteress to the imprisonment of Oscar Wilde in 1895 for 'gross indecency'.
The cast of Sex and Punishment is as varied as the forms taken by human desire itself: royal mistresses, gay charioteers, medieval transvestites, lonely goat-lovers, prostitutes of all stripes and London rent boys. Each of them had forbidden sex, and each was judged - and justice, as Berkowitz shows - rare..
In medieval England, man was the ruler of woman, and the King was the ruler of all. How, then, could royal power lie in female hands?
In She-Wolves, celebrated historian, Helen Castor, tells the dramatic and fascinating stories of four exceptional women who, while never reigning queens, held great power: Matilda, Eleanor of Aquitaine, Isabella of France and Margaret of Anjou. These were women who paved the way for Jane Grey, Mary Tudor and Elizabeth I - the Tudor queens who finally confronted..
LONDON: a settlement founded by the Romans, occupied by the Saxons, conquered by the Danes and ruled by the Normans. This changeful place became a medieval maze of alleys and courtyards, later to be chequered with grand estates of Georgian splendour. It swelled with industry and became the centre of the largest empire in history. And having risen from the rubble of the Blitz, it is now one of the greatest cities in the world.
From the prehistoric occupants of the Thames Valley to the preoccupie..
READ IN AN AFTERNOON. REMEMBER FOR A LIFETIME.
In this short, entertaining and thought-provoking book, acclaimed historian John Hirst provides a fascinating exploration of the qualities that have made Europe a world-changing civilisation.
Starting with a rapid historical overview from the ancient Greeks to the present day (the 'shortest history' itself), Hirst goes on to explore in detail what makes Europe unique: its political evolution; the shaping influence of its linguistic boundaries;..
Read in an afternoon. Remember for a lifetime.
In his acclaimed new bestseller, now in paperback, James Hawes tells the story of Europe's most admired and feared country, from Julius Caesar to Angela Merkel. With more than 100 maps and images, this is a fresh, concise and entertaining attempt to answer the question: are the Germans really us, or them?
*240 PAGES. 100+ MAPS AND IMAGES. 2,000 YEARS OF GERMAN HISTORY.*
'Comprehensive and vivid... I don't know of a better short history of..
The first comprehensive history of the most decisive military campaign of the Third Crusade and one of the longest wartime sieges of the Middle AgesThe two-year-long siege of Acre (1189–1191) was the most significant military engagement of the Third Crusade, attracting armies from across Europe, Syria, Mesopotamia, Egypt, and the Maghreb. Drawing on a balanced selection of Christian and Muslim sources, historian John D. Hosler has written the first book-length account of this hard-won victory fo..
Diarmaid MacCulloch, acknowledged master of the big picture in Christian history, unravels a polyphony of silences from the history of Christianity and beyond. He considers the surprisingly mixed attitudes of Judaism to silence, Jewish and Christian borrowings from Greek explorations of the divine, and the silences which were a feature of Jesus's brief ministry and witness. Besides prayer and mystical contemplation, there are shame and evasion; careless and purposeful forgetting.
The No. 1 Sunday Times and international bestseller - a major reassessment of world history in light of the economic and political renaissance in the re-emerging east.
'Magnificent’ Sunday Times
'Immensely entertaining ... so ambitious, so detailed, so fascinating' The Times
For centuries, fame and fortune were to be found in the west – in the New World of the Americas. Today, it is the east which calls out to those in search of riches and adventure. Sweeping right across Central Asia a..